The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site. Please see our Subscription Terms and Conditions.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2021 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.
Capital Markets

Exchanges open to speculation


In Soviet Russia "speculator" was one of the worst of insults. It summed up all the pejorative associations of capitalist activity that the socialist state instilled in its citizens.

Indeed, in the 1960s, the government of Nikita Khrushchev mounted a campaign against foreign currency speculators. Suspects were arrested and sentenced to long prison sentences. But the public demanded capital punishment. A judge told Khrushchev that the law did not sanction the death penalty for currency speculation. "Who's the boss: we or the law?" Khrushchev replied.

The speculators were executed.

Who knows what Kruschev would have made of the recent explosive growth of derivatives trading in Russia.

In Russia derivatives have not entirely escaped a reputation for being a vehicle for speculators and have had a volatile history there since official trading began in 1992. Trading in FX, interest rate and equity futures grew steadily until 1998, when the Russian crisis forced the collapse of several exchanges, including the Russian Exchange, the first market in the federation to trade equity derivatives.

Alexander Balabushkin, head of business development at the RTS exchange, says: "It's not quite clear why the exchange collapsed.

You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.


Unlimited access to and

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually


Unlimited access to and, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors


Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree